...saw about 25 mins of last night's edition and found it just depressing. I switched on part way through a question that seemed to be about how John Paul II would be remembered. David Blunkett gave a horrific answer about there not being moral absolutes, and against my expectations Petrina Holdsworth (chairman of UKIP - a nice bit of anti-PCness in her job title) was pretty good, and Michael Ancram was generally very good, saying that he wanted our spiritual leaders to place truth above modernisation. But what was really depressing was the audience. Now, I don't think I do agree with the pope's views on contraception, and obviously unprotected sex is only one of a number of means of HIV/AIDS transmission but when Ancram mentioned safe sex not just being about contraception, and pointed out that the pope had been a strong campaigner against the world's failure to provide treatment to AIDS sufferers in the developing world, one woman turned on him and angrily asked him what he could possibly mean by safe sex if not contraception? I couldn't believe it. The one thing that people were unable to admit was that we as species have failed. There was a lot of talk about being progressive, which in many ways is a good idea, but people use the word as if humanity, after however many thousands of years of making a mess of our lives and our world, is just around the corner from getting it right and solving all the problems that we've got ourselves into. I know that this word is not part of the modern frame of reference, but sin is destructive, and in many cases the people who suffer are not the ones who are guilty of the particular sin. So people are often passed HIV through no fault of their own, but as humanity we've cocked up and we're all responsible. We demand our freedom to do what we want and then wash our hands of any guilt for what happens afterwards. As Edith Schaeffer wisely pointed out, we do have freedom of choice, but we don't have the freedom to choose the consequences of our choices. It's funny, Romans 1 has always seemed quite harsh to me until last night, but now it makes a little more sense - professing to be wise we have become fools, and God having told us a better way, has continually accepted our demands for freedom to do what we want and has "given us over to a depraved mind". And we just continue to portray Him
as the bad guy.